Regular breaks allow employees to destress, relax, and recharge. Happy and healthy workers are productive employees, and it is only right to provide a break room for your hardworking staff. More and more company executives are moving away from dull break rooms with only coffee pots and water coolers. Instead, there has been a trend to design colorful spaces with plenty of natural light, games, screens, fresh air, and refreshments.
A work break room can improve morale and boost employee productivity. You want to create a social atmosphere for your employees to forge better work relationships. Additionally, you should provide space for problem-solving and brainstorming. You can explore the tips below to design a better office break room:
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1. Create a Snacks Bar
Your employees require a consistent supply of nutrients to stay healthy, productive and energized. However, busy workers often find it hard to take lunch breaks or eat healthy meals. Therefore, you should provide healthy food options to promote employee health and wellness.
When you provide snacks and beverages, you will show your staff that you care about their well-being. Additionally, a snack bar will bring team members together and support company culture. A breakroom in the workplace encourages people to know each other on a personal level, which will ultimately result in enhanced job satisfaction. Also, management staff and employees can interact in a less formal setting and create better connections.
The pointers below will help you design a winning snacks bar:
Consult Employees on Preferences
When stocking an employee break room, you should ask your employees about their food sensitivities and preferences. To start, you can distribute a short survey for employees to add their food tastes and the options they would like to see provided. Secondly, you can note the most popular foods and generate snack ideas. Remember to cater to vegetarian, gluten-free, and dairy-free preferences.
Focus on Healthy Food Items
Healthy snacks will leave your staff feeling creative and engaged. Additionally, your employees will take fewer sick days due to better health, resulting in lower insurance costs for your company. For example, you can provide fruit for an afternoon snack or free coffee to start the workday.
There are many healthy snack options for an office that wants to promote health. For example, organic corn chips and kale chips are excellent crunch snacks to satisfy crunchy cravings. If you want to boost your workers’ energy, you can provide granola bars with healthy ingredients like nuts, raisins, and coconut.
Dark chocolate is an excellent option to reduce stress levels and boost immune levels. This snack increases productivity since you will have fewer sick employees. You can complement dry snacks with fresh food like veggies, cheese, and yogurt. Invest in a breakroom fridge to preserve fresh treats and provide low-calories drinks like tea, coffee, and coconut water.
Manage Your Stock Inventory
You can task your office manager with managing the snack bar inventory. Other companies opt to have a designated snack manager. The person-in-charge can use software to track popular items, assess inventory, and make recommendations for keeping the bar well-stocked.
Recreational activities promote relaxation, improve morale, and give employees an escape from work. Facing a screen for multiple hours can be mentally exhausting, which is why you need to add fun and games in the breakroom. Since your employees will have different interests, you will need a variety of games to keep everyone engaged, including:
- Ping pong
- Board games
- Video games
- Jigsaw puzzles
- Pool tables
It is common for company executives to worry that games might be a distraction in the office. However, games will re-energize your employees and boost their enthusiasm for work responsibilities. Additionally, games allow workers to release energy and become more efficient at their job. Other benefits of introducing games to the work break room include:
This is perhaps the major benefit of having a playground in the office. Work often results in stress, in which case your employees will be unfocused and exhausted. Sometimes, the afternoon can drag on after a busy morning and leave employees tired.
A short break is often what an employee needs to recharge. For example, after engaging in a round of air hockey, workers will return to their desks refreshed and ready to undertake new tasks. Additionally, you can include workout equipment like yoga mats, exercise balls, small hand weights, and resistance bands.
Digital tools have made work easier, but they have also reduced human interactions. Therefore, you need to be on the lookout for activities that create community and reduce tension among workmates.
During games, your employees will work through challenges, communicate, and enhance their teamwork skills. Recreational activities also foster collaboration, especially if your employees are scattered across numerous departments.
Games that challenge an employee’s problem-solving skills can spark their creativity and inspire new ideas. For example, video games feature imaginative worlds, where an employee must navigate various obstacles to win. Players have to implement plans to work around the hurdles, and games can help employees develop the confidence to solve problems independently.
What’s more, employees can develop new ways to do their job while engaging in games. Your staff will also improve on their communication skills during community activities.
3. Comfortable Furniture
A work break room should be comfortable and inviting. Therefore, you should invest in comfortable seating, good lighting, and decorative elements. The space should inspire people to decompress, get social, or eat lunch. For example, intimate seating encourages interaction, while portable seats are excellent for problem-solving sessions. The elements of good breakroom furniture include:
Comfortable seating is an essential element of any work break room. You want to have options for resting such as couches and eating like benches and armchairs. Additionally, you can include stationary balls and exercise balls for your employees to stay active.
When buying breakroom couches, durability and quality should be the major considerations due to heavy use. If you have many employees, choose sectional sofas instead of love seats. Also, you should select couches with wipe-clean materials like leather and vinyl. Stains are inevitable in the workplace, which is why you should consider the maintenance of break room couches.
If you want to take your breakroom’s aesthetics to the next level, you can include club chairs, ottomans, and beanbags. Such elements will transform your break room into a stylish café that will attract talent.
There are plenty of options for breakroom tables, including coffee tables, picnic tables, and end tables. Consider the number of staff when buying tables to accommodate everyone. Also, your breakroom’s size will influence the type of tables you buy. For example, round tables are suited for smaller rooms since they create a lot of visual space.
Dining tables come in bar heights, standard heights, and counter heights. You can use a mix of these options to design an exciting space. On the other hand, coffee tables are cozy and sophisticated, and they can complement your couches and loveseats.
Accessories will bring your work breakroom to life. To start, you can source pillows made with your brand colors, as long as they work well with your seating. Next, invest in creative wall art, like abstract pieces that liven up your walls. Similarly, vases with fresh flowers will add pops of color to the room, while comfortable rugs will create a cozy feeling.
You can create a lounge within your breakroom by arranging your seats and tables accordingly. Also, create mixed seating arrangements to cater to every employee’s preferences. For example, some workers will assemble with their colleagues for lunch, while others will prefer to watch TV during the lunch break.
The work break room is a getaway for employees to seek entertainment, relaxation, and social interaction. If you are stuck with a dull play area, you can add comfortable seating, engaging games, and a healthy snack bar to rejuvenate your employees. If designed right, a breakroom will enhance productivity and morale in your company.